Last April Rochelle celebrated her birthday and she wanted to treat us for lunch. She knew I just started my diet so she emailed me a magazine scan of a list of good restaurants and told me to choose where we will eat. Isn’t she so thoughtful?
I diligently googled each restaurant in the list and looked at the menus to see what I can eat. I chose Mana-ish and More because of their simply grilled meats. Before seeing that article I didn’t even know this restaurant in Makati that served “Middle Eastern grills and delights” existed.
Mana-ish is located in Jupiter St. just across the Buendia car exchange. From Edsa turn right at Buendia then turn right at the gas station to the beginning of Jupiter St. We made a mistake and started at Jupiter St. near Makati Avenue.
They had one of the nicest looking shawarma ovens I’ve ever seen. Too bad that it was hardly used and one had just a small amount of chicken. I guess it’s not one of their popular items on the menu.
This was the “And More!”After your meal you have the option to puff on a shisha and choose from strawberry, apple, mint and other flavors for only P250. I tried this once in Hong Kong and all I can say is it’s not for me. I’d rather have a chocolate dessert.
hookah or shisha
There were 4 of us for lunch. One was on a strict diet, one doesn’t eat meat, one doesn’t eat chicken and one doesn’t eat beef. I couldn’t wait to see what my friends would order.
Since I couldn’t eat all these food I had to rely on my friends’ comments which I wrote down in my trusty notebook. That’s how a food blogger on a diet operates :D.
All 3 of my friends raved about how tasty the baba ghanouj was. They loved the grilled flavor of the eggplant and the strong spices. They had to order another plate of pita bread to wipe the dish clean.
baba ghanouj P158
The name Mana-ish came from the word manakish which is like an Arabic pizza. They ordered the sampler called Magnificent 6 which featured 6 different toppings some with meat but mostly were vegetarian. They liked some toppings more than others but they unanimously declared the thin, crispy pizza two thumbs up.
magnificent 6 manakish P200
Rochelle and Chris agreed to order the taggen shawarma for their main course. This dish was made up of a fried pita bread as a base and topped ground beef and lamb, tahini sauce, butter and cashew. I’ve never noticed this in other Middle Eastern restaurants I’ve eaten at.
taggen shawarma P320
Rochelle doesn’t eat beef but she made an exception for this dish. They oohed and aahed at how creamy, savory, yummy it was. The pita soaked up all the sauce and was the perfect vessel for the tender meat. This was the one dish that really tempted me to cheat and try it. But my will was strong and I just mentally planned when I could come back to try it.
Db was the one who didn’t eat meat so she ordered the fish harra which was baked fish with spices and tomatoes sauce and walnuts and served with saffron rice. They all said it was delicious until Chris said the fish was dory. The waiter confirmed it and suddenly the fish didn’t taste as good. My friends had an aversion to cream dory fish which is widely used in restaurants in Manila.
fish harra P315
I brought my scale and weighed the chicken. My allowed portion was one stick plus one piece. I brought my own veggies, sauteed baby bok choy, and had a very hearty and filling meal.
The chicken was much better than I expected. It was uber tender and juicy. The flavors were bold but not too salty or spicy. Although I’m pretty sure some ingredients in the marinade were not allowed in my diet. My friends were amazed with the quantity of my food. They thought I ate teeny weeny amounts only.
Muhalabieh was a light flan similar to panna cotta but topped with orange flower water, rose syrup and pistachio nuts. Their first comment was it smelled like a classy hotel’s bathroom. I almost choked from laughing. They didn’t enjoy the dessert so much since we all couldn’t stop chortling.
Halawe or halva was a confection made from tahini or nut butters although we didn’t know it at that time. It was served with saj bread and honey was drizzled on top. Arabic peanut butter sandwich?
halawe w/ honey served with saj P125
We were all happy to try out Mana-ish and More! There were so many other interesting and unusual food items on the menu that we would like to try. Another bonus is the very affordable price. For all these dishes and dessert our bill came to only P2,000. I would definitely go back.
Mana-ish and More!
#20 Jupiter Str. Brgy, Bel-Air, Makati City
(across Buendia car exchange)
telephone: 896-6262, 501 52 98
Monday – Thursday 11:00 AM -11:00 PM
Friday – Saturday 11:00 AM – 12:00 AM